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The Blizzard of 1978


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It was 43 years ago today! I was 14 years old, living in Sandusky county (about 30 min. south of Toledo). We didn't have power for several days, and of course our house was all electric so we had to stay with a neighbor until they got our electric back on. We didn't have school for a week or two, and then had to have split sessions at the junior high because the pipes froze and burst in the high school.

This photo is from the Mansfield News Journal; truck driver James Truly was stuck in his cab for almost 5 days until the National Guard rescued him.

Blizzard.jpg

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I remember that storm, but we called it the Ice Storm of '78 in western NY, since we'd just had a little Blizzard in 1977.  In the '78 storm, we didn't get all that much snow, but the sleet froze to everything.  Within a couple hours, tree branches the size of your finger became the size of your arm.  The weight caused them to break and fall onto power lines, taking out the entire area.  On my block, not one section between poles remained in the air.  We were without power for almost a week. 

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here in central jersey was a mix of snow and ice. 

if i remember correctly power was out for 4-5 days, but it made no difference to me because i was out in a cat 988 pushing/digging out drifts for 7 days. we had a total of 5 front end loaders on the streets of bayone nj, and 3 bulldozers down on the riverbanks pushing off the snow the trucks dumped there into the river.

they were using a gas powered pump to suck diesel out of the in ground tank to fill the service truck to come out and fill up all the machines. 

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when you are up to your armpits in alligators,

it is hard to remember you only came in to drain the swamp..

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7 hours ago, h67st said:

It was 43 years ago today! I was 14 years old, living in Sandusky county (about 30 min. south of Toledo). We didn't have power for several days, and of course our house was all electric so we had to stay with a neighbor until they got our electric back on. We didn't have school for a week or two, and then had to have split sessions at the junior high because the pipes froze and burst in the high school.

This photo is from the Mansfield News Journal; truck driver James Truly was stuck in his cab for almost 5 days until the National Guard rescued him.

Blizzard.jpg

Looks like a van trailer at first glance

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i remember it too. I was 9 and living in East Islip Long Island, N.Y.   It was the coolest snowfall, .. I played in the snow and loved the vacation from school.. I made tunnels and snowmen, and threw a shi$@&load of snowballs... Jojo

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I remember it. I was 12. Those were the days before everyone had a 4X4 and a snow blower.  We lived on a 3 block long dead end street. All the neighbors pitched in and we had ourselves dug out to the "traveled rd" on the 2nd day but it was another day before the city got that road opened up. The blizzard was the worst single storm of my lifetime to date.  However the winter of 81/82 was terrible for Fort Wayne as we got so much snow over the winter the city trucked it to parks near our 3 different rivers then when it all began melting... the city was flooded. I believe 1/3rd of Ft Wayne, IN went under water. I was a sophomore in h.s. and city schools were closed so the students could fill and place sandbags we did this for days, non-stop.  President Reagan flew in and even tossed a few sand bags. One of the news agencies deemed Ft Wayne as "the city that saved itself".

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for us it was the snow storm of 62. 

snow drifts were 25 foot plus deep in places. being on the end of the road on top of a hill, we were able to get out through the second floor windows. 

2 houses up the road had to be brought out through a hole cut in the roof. 

it took the town two weeks to get the roads open with bulldozers because the drifts were just too deep for the front loaders to bust through. 

 

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when you are up to your armpits in alligators,

it is hard to remember you only came in to drain the swamp..

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'78 l was driving a contractors 10 wheeler (GMC 318/13spd) hauling snow for the city of Manchester NH. We would dump thru two holes (both sections were made to be lifted out) on the Granite St bridge into the Merrimack river. We did 12 hours a night for the city then go do our private lots. Still dumping into the river over a retaining wall just a different spot in the city. Didn't see the house for five days, just slept in the truck.    .....Hippy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             66dc75  That's a nice truck in your USPS picture! lol  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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i remember back when NYC used to scoop the snow/ice into dump trucks, drive them out onto a pier in the river. put 2-3 gallons of gas in the load, and toss a 5 minute flair in the body. 

then dump it off the pier. 

there used to be flaming icebergs floating out in the bay. 

when you are up to your armpits in alligators,

it is hard to remember you only came in to drain the swamp..

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I remember the winter of 1958 in the Finger Lakes region of Central New York when we had blizzards on 4 consecutive Sundays in Jan/Feb.. The cumulative bit was it got worse each week.. First time in 50 years the Ithaca City Schools had been closed.. One farmer on a dead end dirt road had the Natl Guard fly him in some grain and he washed out his old Easy Washer with Lysol and churned butter instead of dumping milk.. 

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Brocky

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Yes it’s sucked I was driving for nissens bakery I think we were only off for one night since we had perishables that everybody needed but what I remember mostly as the streets were wide open for us all cars banned for a few days and people were walking everywhere for groceries... bob

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On 1/27/2021 at 10:20 AM, 70mackMB said:

'78 l was driving a contractors 10 wheeler (GMC 318/13spd) hauling snow for the city of Manchester NH. We would dump thru two holes (both sections were made to be lifted out) on the Granite St bridge into the Merrimack river. We did 12 hours a night for the city then go do our private lots. Still dumping into the river over a retaining wall just a different spot in the city. Didn't see the house for five days, just slept in the truck.    .....Hippy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             66dc75  That's a nice truck in your USPS picture! lol  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thought you would like that Hippy

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Hell I appreciate that story. I had a 1970 Chevy pick up with a snowplow on it but then I wasn’t too concerned about getting around we were living in a trailer park at the time temporary  me and my pop I drove up in front of the place and switched with my dad who was stuck in the  trailer Snow was 20 feet high from snow blowers we both walked over the snowbank I was going to bed my dad was stir crazy and had to get out of a while ha ha... bob

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They were using bulldozers to plow our neighborhood but the weight of a d8 cracked a gas line in the street and a house up the street blew up. Not sure if there wasn't more to it but that was what it was blamed on. Dad left to go get to the plow truck he drove (Autocar 10 wheel dump just like the one on the photo) about 10 miles from home. He name it 3/4 of the way couldn't get any further and had to turn back. This book him about 4 or 5 hours. Worst part of this storm was it was not supposed to be that bad, caught everyone by surprise. 

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I was only 6 at the time living in Stoughton, MA.  I remember my Dad telling stories of sleeping on store shelves at the Mall in Braintree, MA during the Blizzard.  He was in truck sales at the time and plowed on the side for one of his customers - P. Caliacoo out of Quincy.  At one point they sent out a loader to blaze a trail for the fuel truck to get to the fuel depot but then the loader ran out of fuel before they got there and they had to send another loader to finish the trip.  

Dave

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my cousin lives there....born and raised same house,and he still lives in it.that area has certainly got crowded,,,compared to when i was a kid in the 60s...bob

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On 1/26/2021 at 4:09 PM, Joey Mack said:

i remember it too. I was 9 and living in East Islip Long Island, N.Y.   It was the coolest snowfall, .. I played in the snow and loved the vacation from school.. I made tunnels and snowmen, and threw a shi$@&load of snowballs... Jojo

It’s a lot more fun when you don’t have to work in it and you’re a kid I had to shovel yesterday for a couple of hours while the next-door neighbor kids were giggling and laughing next-door ha ha bob

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7 hours ago, DavCut said:

I was only 6 at the time living in Stoughton, MA.  I remember my Dad telling stories of sleeping on store shelves at the Mall in Braintree, MA during the Blizzard.  He was in truck sales at the time and plowed on the side for one of his customers - P. Caliacoo out of Quincy.  At one point they sent out a loader to blaze a trail for the fuel truck to get to the fuel depot but then the loader ran out of fuel before they got there and they had to send another loader to finish the trip.  

Dave

We lived north side of Brockton,  the plow truck was down next to AA Will's pit in Canton, he made it as far as as Will's yard in Stoughton and had to turn back. He did end up disappearing for a few days on snow removal though. 

Where did you live in Stoughton?

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I was 5 in 78, we lived in Montgomery County Pa just outside of far northeast Philadelphia. When my dad was home from trucking he worked for the local Gulf station running their tow trucks, had a Holmes 750 on a 1971 6500 GMC (among one other tow truck and two roll-backs.) They had the tow contract for Lower Moreland Township (Huntingdon Valley.) He would chain up that 6500 and he swore it would go anywhere. He said he spent about 28 or 30 hours in that truck pulling people out of ditches and winching them up hills or clearing roads before he finally gave up to sleep. 

I remember the blizzard of 1996- I was a rookie Federal Firefighter at the Naval Air Warfare Center in Warminster Pa. I was stuck there for 5 days straight. (1- my own 24hr shift. 2- Forced for 24, blizzard. 3- my own 24 shift. 4- repaid a shift exchange. 5- my own 24) By the end of day 3 we were running out of food. The Navy XO gave us permission to enter the Commissary and take food as long as we kept careful records of what we took. He picked up the tab out of his pocket a few days later. The base itself was closed. We ran several calls out to housing, which was about a 2.5 mile ride. The telesqurt pumper was chained up but the long wheelbase dragged around snow banked corners and got stuck often. We ran one medical call that was a kid having a bad asthma attack and the ambulance couldn't get in, so we loaded up the mom and kid in the cab and trucked them out to the main drag to meet the ambulance. I hate being a firefighter in snow, ice and cold. 

TWO STROKES ARE FOR GARDEN TOOLS

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